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Stolpestad Essay

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”Stolpestad” written in 2008 by the author William Lychack. The short story is about a police officer, there is on he’s usual patrol, driving around in the same old town with the same houses and the same old boring roads. In the short story, it seems that he is tired of making the same routines over and over again. Already in the first few lines, the writer William Lychack makes that point, and I quote: “another one of those long slow lazy afternoons of summer…” [L.1-2]. If you did not get the point there, then in the next about eight lines, he is summing up all the other things he sees every day on he’s patrol.

You get to know the police officers name in the start of the story where the author writes, “this is your life, Stolpestad” [L.5.].  The way the story has been written is weird and I think that you not often will see a stoy written like that. It is like, you are Stolpestad in this short story and the author are talking to you or telling you what you are doing. “The coffee shops, the liquor stores, laundromats, police, fire, gas stations to pass—this is your life, Stolpestad” [L.4-5.], ”And you ask if she’s his dog.” [L.48.] and “And you go to one knee, touch your hand to the grass, ask the boy how old he is.” [L.50.]. Stolpestad is a little bored of just driving around alone in the same routines repeatedly, so that is why his thoughts is about all the things he drives by as he always does. The short story is written in an second-person because the author writes “you”, “your” and “yourself” like it is the reader of the story that also are the man in the story or like the writer writes to the police officer which would be a little weird . “Back to all the turns you were born, your whole life spent along the same sad streets” [L. 10-11] and “yourself as a boy” [L.13]. The second-person narrative makes the reader more active in the story and makes it more exiting to read then. As I have written before it also make you feel like you are a part of the story. Then the weird thing of this story is, even though the author writes “you”, “your” and “yourself” to the police officer that feels like is you, he has a name. That makes it harder to feel like you are in the story.  

When Stolpestad has to kill the dog, the actions and the surroundings are described really detailed. “it’s like he’s drawing her with the brush of grass—and as you stand there, he pushes the feather top of grass into the corner of her eye.” [L.34-36.]. it gives the scene or the kill more excitement and the dog more of a personality. You can now relate to the feelings that Stolpestad goes through, due to the fact that the feelings are described in the text. “you standing over her with this hope that she’s already dead” [L.78-79]. That sentence shows that the police officer did not want to kill the dog, but it was necessary. The dog just laid and suffered, so Stolpestad shot the dog.



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